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Spain launches investigation into French gunman's stay in Madrid

OFF TV, AFP | Screen grab of French supermarket gunman Amedy Coulibaly taken from a propaganda video
2 min

Spain’s High Court on Thursday ordered an investigation into time spent in the country by French supermarket gunman Amedy Coulibaly days before he launched a deadly attack on a Jewish supermarket in Paris.


Coulibaly killed a policewoman and four customers at a kosher shop in Paris on Jan. 9. Two other gunmen shot 12 people at and near the offices of the Charlie Hebdo newspaper.

During his stay in Spain, Coulibaly was accompanied by his wife Hayat Boumeddiene and a third party who could have aided the latter’s escape to Syria, the High Court said in a statement.

In the Spanish judicial system, the High Court can open an investigation and appoints a judge to the case who then receives police help.

Coulibaly spent the weekend of Dec. 30 to Jan. 2 in Madrid with Boumeddiene who later went to Syria via Turkey, state security sources told La Vanguardia newspaper. He returned to France on Jan. 2, accompanied by a third party, the paper said.

Interior Minister Jorge Fernandez Diaz said on public television the Spanish authorities were co-operating with French counterparts but he declined to confirm whether Coulibaly had been in Madrid or say who he could have been in contact with.

Spain’s Interior Ministry declined to make further comment.

France launched a search for 26-year-old Boumeddiene after police killed Coulibaly while storming the Jewish supermarket where he had taken hostages. Authorities described her as armed and dangerous.

Footage from security cameras posted on the HaberTurk news website showed a woman it identified as Boumeddiene walking with a man to passport control at Istanbul’s Sabiha Gokcen Airport after flying in from Madrid.


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